Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Revelation 11:8

And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which mystically is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Egypt;   Martyrdom;   Vision;   Scofield Reference Index - World-System;   Thompson Chain Reference - Eternal;   Everlasting;   Future State of the Wicked;   Future, the;   Punishment;   Sodom;   The Topic Concordance - Witness;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Antichrist;   Sodom;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - City;   Day of the lord;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Jerusalem;   Restore, Renew;   Zechariah, Theology of;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Order;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Antichrist;   Gentiles;   Judah, Kingdom of;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Revelation, the Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Antichrist;   Beast;   Revelation, Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Apocalypse;   Body;   Cross, Cross-Bearing;   Egypt ;   Eschatology;   Gomorrah ;   Revelation, Book of;   Sodom;   Sodom and Gomorrah;   Street;   Street (2);   Type;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Gomorrah, Gomorrha ;   Sodom, Sodoma ;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Sodom;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Egypt;   Sodom;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Body;   Carcass;   Corpse;   Revelation of John:;   Sodom;   Spiritual;   Spiritually;   Thessalonians, the Second Epistle of Paul to the;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

The great city - Some say Rome, which may be spiritually called Sodom for its abominations, Egypt for its tyrannous cruelty, and the place where our Lord was crucified, because of its persecution of the members of Christ; but Jerusalem itself may be intended. All these things I must leave to others.

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/revelation-11.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

And their dead bodies shall lie in the street - Prof. Stuart, “Shall be in the street.” The words “shall lie” are supplied by the translators, but not improperly. The literal rendering would be, “and their corpses upon the street of the great city”; and the meaning is, that there would be a state of things in regard to them which would be well represented by supposing them to lie unburied. To leave a body unburied is to treat it with contempt, and among the ancients nothing was regarded as more dishonorable than such treatment. See the Ajax of Sophocles. Among the Jews also it was regarded as a special indignity to leave the dead unburied, and hence they are always represented as deeply solicitous to secure the interment of their dead. See Genesis 23:4. Compare 2 Samuel 21:9-13; Ecclesiastes 6:3; Isaiah 14:18-20; Isaiah 22:16; Isaiah 53:9. The meaning here is, that, for the time specified, those who are here referred to would be treated with indignity and contempt. In the fulfillment of this, we are not, of course, to look for any literal accomplishment of what is here said, but for some treatment of the “witnesses” which would be well represented by this; that is, which would show that they were treated, after they were silenced, like unburied corpses putrefying in the sun.

Of the great city - Where these transactions would occur. As a great city would be the agent in putting them to death, so the result would be as if they were publicly exposed in its streets. The word “great” here supposes that the city referred to would be distinguished for its size - a circumstance of some importance in determining the place referred to.

Which spiritually is called - πνευματικῶς pneumatikōsThis word occurs only in one other place in the New Testament, 1 Corinthians 2:14, “because they are spiritually discerned” - where it means, “in accordance with the Holy Spirit,” or” through the aid of the Holy Spirit.” Here it seems to be used in the sense of metaphorically, or allegorically, in contradistinction from the literal and real name. There may possibly be an intimation here that the city is so called by the Holy Spirit to designate its real character, but still the essential meaning is, that that was not its literal name. For some reason the real name is not given to it; but such descriptions are applied as are designed to leave no doubt as to what is intended.

Sodom - Sodom was distinguished for its wickedness, and especially for that vice to which its abominations have given name. For the character of Sodom, see Genesis 18:19. Compare 2 Peter 2:6. In inquiring what “city” is here referred to, it would be necessary to find in it such abominations as characterized Sodom, or so much wickedness that it would be proper to call it Sodom. If it shall be found that this was designed to refer to papal Rome, no one can doubt that the abominations which prevailed there would justify such an appellation. Compare the notes on Revelation 9:20-21.

And Egypt - That is, it would have such a character that the name Egypt might be properly given to it. Egypt is known in the Scriptures as the land of oppression - the land where the Israelites, the people of God, were held in cruel bondage. Compare Ezekiel 23:8. The particular idea, then, which seems to be conveyed here is, that the “city” referred to would be characterized by acts of oppression and wrong toward the people of God. So far as the language is concerned, it might apply either to Jerusalem or to Rome - for both were eminently characterized by such acts of oppression toward the true children of God as to make it proper to I compare their cruelties with those which were inflicted on the Israelites by the Egyptians. Of whichever of these places the course of the exposition may require us to understand this, it will be seen at once that the language is such as is strictly applicable to either; though, as the reference is rather to Christians than to the ancient people of God, it must be admitted that it would be most natural to refer it to Rome. More acts authorizing persecution, and designed to crush the true people of God, have gone forth from Rome than from any other city on the face of the earth; and taking the history of the church together, there is no place that would be so properly designated by the term here employed.

Where also our Lord was crucified - If this refers to Jerusalem, it is to be taken literally; if to another city, it is to be understood as meaning that he was practically crucified there: that is, that the treatment of his friends - his church - was such that it might be said that he was “crucified afresh” there; for what is done to his church may be said to be done to him. Either of these interpretations would be justified by the use of the language. Thus in Hebrews 6:6, it is said of apostates from the true faith (compare the notes on the passage), that “they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh.” If the passage before us is to be taken figuratively, the meaning is, that acts would be performed which might properly be represented as crucifying‘ the Son of God; that, as he lives in his church, the acts of perverting his doctrines, and persecuting his people, would be, in fact, an act of crucifying the Lord again. Thus understood, the language is strictly applicable to Rome; that is, if it is admitted that John meant to characterize that city, he has employed such language as a Jewish Christian would naturally use. While, therefore, it must be admitted that the language is such as could be literally applied only to Jerusalem, it is still true that it is such language as might be figuratively applied to any other city strongly resembling that, and that in this sense it would characterize Rome above all other cities of the world. The common reading of the text here is “our Lord” - ἡμῶν hēmōnthe text now regarded as correct, however (Griesbach, Tittmann, Hahn), is “their Lord” - αὐτῶν autōnThis makes no essential difference in the sense, except that it directs the attention more particularly to the fact that they were treated like their own Master.

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/revelation-11.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Revelation 11:8

Where also our Lord was crucified.

The Cross of the Lord Jesus

This passage strikingly identifies the Master and the servants--our Lord and His witnesses. They were to suffer as He suffered and where He suffered: one with Him in life and death, in shame and glory; one with Him on the Cross, in the grave, in resurrection, in ascension, and on the throne. “Where also our Lord was crucified.” It is the last reference to the Cross of Christ in the Bible, and corresponds well with that frequent expression in the Revelation, “the Lamb slain”; carrying us back to “the seed of the woman” and “the bruised heel.”

1. It was the place of guilt and condemnation (Matthew 27:22; Matthew 27:26; Matthew 27:28).

2. It was the place of shame (Hebrews 12:2).

3. It was the place of weakness (2 Corinthians 13:4).

4. It was the place of pain (Hebrews 13:12).

5. The place of the curse (Galatians 3:13).

6. The place of rejection (John 19:6).

7. The place of hatred (Matthew 27:25).

8. The place of death (Matthew 20:18-19). (H. Bonar, D. D.)

Good things found in the Cross

This Cross, where so many evil things meet, is the place where all good things are to be found. God gathered all the evil to that spot, that He might utterly make away with it, through Him who took all the evil on Himself, that He might bring out of it only good.

1. It is the place of propitiation (Leviticus 16:15; Romans 3:25). The altar was there for the burnt-offering. The place without the gate for the sin-offering was there.

2. It is the meeting-place (Exodus 29:42). It is the place where we meet with God, and God meets with us in friendship, and love, and joy. It is the place where the Father meets the prodigal and embraces him.

3. It is the place of love. God’s love is there, shining in its full brightness, unhindered and undimmed.

4. It is the place of acceptance. Here we become “accepted in the Beloved.” Here the exchange takes place between the perfect and the imperfect. Believing in the perfect One, we become “complete in Him.” (H. Bonar, D. D.)

What the Cross accomplished

The Cross accomplished such things as the following:--

1. It removed the wall of partition (Colossians 2:14).

2. It made peace (Colossians 1:20).

3. It has secured oneness (Ephesians 2:15-16).

4. It has brought life (2 Corinthians 13:4).

5. It contains power (1 Corinthians 1:18; 1 Corinthians 1:23).

6. It is the focus or centre of all wisdom (1 Corinthians 1:24).

7. It crucifies the world (Galatians 6:14).

8. It furnishes a theme for glorying (Galatians 6:14).

9. It is the model and test of service (Mark 8:34; Luke 9:23).

10. It is the badge of discipleship (Luke 14:27).

11. It is God’s way of salvation (Acts 10:39-43).

12. It is the measure of Christ’s endurance and obedience (Philippians 2:8).

13. It is the pledge and standard of Divine love (Romans 5:8).

14. It is the revelation of God’s character (1 John 4:10).

15. It is God’s lamp of light.

16. It is the universal magnet (John 12:32).

17. It is the universal balm and medicine.

18. It is man’s estimate of sin.

19. It is God’s verdict against sin, and His estimate of it (Romans 8:3).

20. It is man’s estimate of the Son of God.

21. It is God’s interpretation of law and its penalties.

(H. Bonar, D. D.)

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Revelation 11:8". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/revelation-11.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

And their dead bodies lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.

And their dead bodies lie in the street ... This describes no literal event. "They that dwell on the earth" (Revelation 11:10), meaning "all men" shall see this; and to think of just two individual men remaining unburied in some specific city is ridiculous. Something of far greater import than this is depicted. "The word for street here signifies a broad street, such as the principal street of a city would be."[49] Thus, we may say that the unburied bodies of the dead, decorate Broadway!

Of the great city ... "This phrase never refers to Jerusalem."[50] What does it mean? "It is man in organized community and opposed to God."[51] "It is civilization utterly alien to the will of God."[52] "It is every city, and not city";[53] and therefore, it means all the cities of mankind. This is exceedingly important to the understanding of Revelation 11:13. Its allegorical names (note the plural) are Sodom, Egypt, and Jerusalem (where the Lord was crucified). There is just as much authority for restricting the meaning here to Sodom as there is for referring it exclusively to Jerusalem, and neither could be correct; and yet countless scholars have fallen into the error of reading this as a reference to literal, earthly Jerusalem. This type of literalism has destroyed the perception of many. For example, Beckwith declared that, "The details make clear that primarily the literal Jerusalem is meant."[54] Jerusalem is not even a "great city" in any sense. Lenski said, "I rode completely around its outer walls in just an hour on an ass, in 1925!"[55] Also, Eller said:

By the triple allegorical name, John has freed the city here of any physical or geographical limitations. It can be located anywhere at any time, just as Picasso's Guernica is at one and the same time, both Guernica, Spain, 1937, and also any and every other place where war has wreaked its destruction.[56]

The spiritual character of the world's great cities this very day lives up to the triple names assigned to them in this marvelous prophecy. Like Jerusalem, they are the headquarters of God's apostate peoples: "Like Sodom, they are corrupt; like Egypt, they are tyrannical."[57] This proper identification of "the great city" here will make the exegesis of Revelation 11:13 understandable.

The dead bodies left in the streets ... Returning to this aspect of the vision again, the bodily presence of dead churches on the principal avenues and "Broadways" of earth's cities all over the world is attested by their impressive buildings which are the principal adornment of many such streets; and their physical attractiveness explains why the dead are thus permitted to remain "unburied" for all people to see. This thought will be further elaborated under the following verse.

[49] Charles H. Roberson, op. cit., p. 73.

[50] James D. Strauss, op. cit., p. 156.

[51] Leon Morris, op. cit., p. 143.

[52] Robert H. Mounce, op. cit., p. 218.

[53] Leon Morris, op. cit., p. 143.

[54] Isbon T. Beckwith, The Apocalypse of John (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House, 1919), p. 586.

[55] R. C. H. Lenski, op. cit., p. 75.

[56] Vernard Eller, op. cit., p. 113.

[57] Frank L. Cox, op. cit., p. 75.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/revelation-11.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city,.... Not Jerusalem, which was destroyed when John had this vision, and which will; not be rebuilt at the time it refers to; nor is it ever called the great city, though the city of the great King; however, not in this book, though the new Jerusalem is so called, Revelation 21:10; but that can never be designed here; but the city of Rome, or the Roman jurisdiction, the whole empire of the Romish antichrist, which is often called the great city in this book; see Revelation 16:19. The city of Rome itself was very large, and the Roman empire still larger, so as to be called the whole world and the antichristian see of Rome has been of great extent. Now as the street of a city denotes a public open place in it, a place of concourse and resort, Proverbs 1:20, the dead bodies of those witnesses being said to lie here, may design the publicness of their silence, disgrace, and contempt; and that the silencing and degrading them, and depriving them of all privileges, will be known all over the antichristian empire; and that they will be exposed to public ignominy and shame, their persons, their characters, their testimony, their doctrines, their writings, their churches, and families, and all that belong to them: or else this "street" may design some part of the Romish jurisdiction, and it may be Great Britain may be particularly designed; for where should the dead bodies of the witnesses lie, but where they are slain? and where can they be slain, but where they are? and where are they, at least where are there so many as in these islands? It may be objected, that Great Britain is not a part of the see of Rome, does not belong to the jurisdiction of it; to this it may be replied, that in this last war of the beast, the outer court will be given to the Gentiles, the bulk of the reformed churches will fall off to Popery, and their countries again fall into the hands of the pope, and, among the rest, Great Britain. The fears of Dr. Goodwin seem to be too just, and well grounded, that the prophecy in Daniel 11:45 respects our island, which speaks of antichrist planting "the tabernacles of his palace between the seas, in the glorious holy mountain", or "the mountain of delight, of holiness". Now where has God such a mountain of delight, or a people that are the darling of his soul, as here? where in all the globe is there such a spot where God has so many saints, so many Holy Ones, as in this island? it may have been truly called a glorious holy mountain, or a mountain of delight; and what place between the seas is there to which these characters can agree, but Great Britain? Here then antichrist will plant the tabernacles of his palace; but it will be but a tabernacle, or tent; it will be but for a short time, as it follows, "yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him", Daniel 11:45. Now this great city, in the street of which the bodies of the witnesses will lie exposed, is that

which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt; that is, it is called so in a mystic and allegoric sense, in distinction from the literal sense; see 1 Corinthians 10:3; it is called Sodom because of the fulness of bread, plenty and abundance of all outward good things in it; as well as for the pride and idleness of the priests, monks, and friars which swarm in it; and also for the open profaneness and contempt of true and serious religion in it; and particularly for the sin of sodomy, so frequently committed here, with impunity, yea with allowance, and even with commendation. This sin was extolled with praises, as Brightman observes, by John a Casa, archbishop of Beneventum; and was defended in a book, published for that purpose, by one Mutius; and which was allowed by the bulls and letters patent of Pope Julius the Third; and it is called Egypt, because of its tyranny and oppression; as the Egyptians kept the Israelites in bondage, and made them to serve with rigour, and embittered their lives, so the pope, and his Gentiles, or Egyptians, have in a most oppressive and rigorous manner tyrannised over the souls, bodies, and estates of men; and also because of its great idolatry, Egypt being very remarkable for the number of its deities, and the meanness of them; by which the idols and idolatries of the church of Rome may be fitly expressed:

where also our Lord was crucified; that is, in the great city, which is fitly compared to Sodom and Egypt; for Christ was crucified actually in Judea, which was then become a Roman province, and under Pontius Pilate, a Roman governor, and by his order, and suffered a Roman kind of death, crucifixion, and for a crime he was charged with, though a false one, against Caesar the Roman emperor; and Christ has been crucified at Rome itself in his members, who have suffered persecution and death, and even the death of the cross there; and he has been crucified afresh, both by the sins and immoralities of those who have bore the Christian name there, and by the frequent sacrifices of him in the Mass. Moreover, by this periphrasis may be meant Jerusalem; and the sense be, that as the great city, or jurisdiction of Rome, may be spiritually or mystically called Sodom and Egypt, so likewise the place where our Lord was crucified, that is, Jerusalem; and that for this reason, because that as Jerusalem stoned and killed the prophets of the Lord, and upon the inhabitants of it were found all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, so in Rome, in mystical Babylon, will be found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon earth, Matthew 23:35. The Alexandrian copy, the Complutensian edition, the Vulgate Latin, Syriac, and Ethiopic versions, read, "where also their Lord was crucified"; and the Arabic version more expressly, "the Lord of these two", i.e. the two witnesses.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/revelation-11.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And their dead bodies [shall lie] in the 13 street of the great city, which d spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, 14 where also our Lord was crucified.

(13) That is, openly at Rome: where at that time was a most great crowd of people, the year of Jubile being then first ordained by Boniface to the same end, in the year 1300, an example of which is read in chapter 1 "Extra, de poenitentys & remissionibus." So by one act he committed two wrongs against Christ, both abolishing his truth by restoring the type of the Jubile, and triumphing over his members by wicked superstition. O religious heart! Now that we should understand the things of Rome, John himself is the author, both after in the seventeenth chapter almost throughout, and also in the restriction now next following, when he says, it is that great city (as he calls it) (Revelation 17:18) and is spiritually termed Sodom and Egypt: and that spiritually (for that must here again be repeated from before) Christ was there crucified. For the two first names signify spiritual wickednesses: the latter signifies the show and pretence of good, that is, of Christian and sound religion. Sodom signifies most licentious impiety and in the most confident glorying of that city, as it were in true religion, being yet full of falsehood and ungodliness. Now who is ignorant that these things do rather, and better fit Rome, than any other city? The commendations of the city of Rome for many years past, are publicly notorious, which are not for me to gather together. This only I will say, that he long since did very well see what Rome is, who upon leaving, used these verses: "Roma vale, vidi, Satis est vidisse: revertar, Quumleno, meretrix, scurra, cinadus ero." "Now farewell Rome, I have seen thee, it was enough to see: I will return when as I mean, bawd, harlot knave to be"

(d) After a more secret type of meaning and understanding.

(14) Namely in his parts, as also he said to Saul in (Acts 9:5)

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Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/revelation-11.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

dead bodies — So Vulgate, Syriac, and Andreas. But A, B, C, the oldest manuscripts, and Coptic read the singular, “dead body.” The two fallen in one cause are considered as one.

the great cityeight times in the Revelation elsewhere used of BABYLON (Revelation 14:8; Revelation 16:19; Revelation 17:18; Revelation 18:10, Revelation 18:16, Revelation 18:18, Revelation 18:19, Revelation 18:21). In Revelation 21:10 (English Version as to the new Jerusalem), the oldest manuscripts omit “the great” before city, so that it forms no exception. It must, therefore, have an anticipatory reference to the mystical Babylon.

whichGreek, “the which,” namely, “the city which.

spiritually — in a spiritual sense.

Sodom — The very term applied by Isaiah 1:10 to apostate Jerusalem (compare Ezekiel 16:48).

Egypt — the nation which the Jews‘ besetting sin was to lean upon.

where  …  Lord was crucified — This identifies the city as Jerusalem, though the Lord was crucified outside of the city. Eusebius mentions that the scene of Christ‘s crucifixion was enclosed within the city by Constantine; so it will be probably at the time of the slaying of the witnesses. “The beast [for example, Napoleon and France‘s efforts] has been long struggling for a footing in Palestine; after his ascent from the bottomless pit he struggles much more” [Bengel]. Some one of the Napoleonic dynasty may obtain that footing, and even be regarded as Messiah by the Jews, in virtue of his restoring them to their own land; and so may prove to be the last Antichrist. The difficulty is, how can Jerusalem be called “the great city,” that is, Babylon? By her becoming the world‘s capital of idolatrous apostasy, such as Babylon originally was, and then Rome has been; just as she is here called also “Sodom and Egypt.”

also our — A, B, C, Origen, Andreas, and others read, “also their.” Where their Lord, also, as well as they, was slain. Compare Revelation 18:24, where the blood of ALL slain on earth is said to be found IN BABYLON, just as in Matthew 23:35, Jesus saith that, “upon the Jews and JERUSALEM” (Compare Matthew 23:37, Matthew 23:38) shall “come ALL the righteous blood shed upon earth”; whence it follows Jerusalem shall be the last capital of the world apostasy, and so receive the last and worst visitation of all the judgments ever inflicted on the apostate world, the earnest of which was given in the Roman destruction of Jerusalem. In the wider sense, in the Church-historical period, the Church being the sanctuary, all outside of it is the world, the great city, wherein all the martyrdoms of saints have taken place. Babylon marks its idolatry, Egypt its tyranny, Sodom its desperate corruption, Jerusalem its pretensions to sanctity on the ground of spiritual privileges, while all the while it is the murderer of Christ in the person of His members. All which is true of Rome. So Vitringa. But in the more definite sense, Jerusalem is regarded, even in Hebrews (Hebrews 13:12-14), as the world city which believers were then to go forth from, in order to “seek one to come.”

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/revelation-11.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Their dead bodies lie (το πτωμα αυτωνto ptōma autōn). Old word from πιπτωpiptō (to fall), a fall, especially of bodies slain in battle, a corpse, a carcase (Matthew 14:12), here the singular (some MSS. πτωματαptōmata plural) as belonging to each of the αυτωνautōn (their) like στοματος αυτωνstomatos autōn (their mouth) in Revelation 11:5. So also in Revelation 11:9. No word in the Greek for “lie.”

In (επιepi). “Upon,” as in Revelation 11:6, with genitive (της πλατειαςtēs plateias), the broad way (οδουhodou understood), from πλατυςplatus (broad) as in Matthew 6:5, old word (Revelation 21:21; Revelation 22:2).

Of the great city (της πολεως της μεγαληςtēs poleōs tēs megalēs). Clearly Jerusalem in view of the closing clause (οπουεσταυρωτηhopou- ητιςestaurōthē), though not here called “the holy city” as in Revelation 11:2, and though elsewhere in the Apocalypse Babylon (Rome) is so described (Revelation 14:8; Revelation 16:19; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 18:2, Revelation 18:10, Revelation 18:16, Revelation 18:18, Revelation 18:19, Revelation 18:21).

Which (πνευματικωςhētis). Which very city, not “whichever.”

Spiritually (πνευματικοςpneumatikōs). This late adverb from πνευματικοςpneumatikos (spiritual) occurs in the N.T. only twice, in 1 Corinthians 2:14 for the help of the Holy Spirit in interpreting God‘s message and here in a hidden or mystical (allegorical sense). For this use of οπου και ο κυριος αυτων εσταυρωτηpneumatikos see 1 Corinthians 10:3. Judah is called Sodom in Isaiah 1:9.; Ezekiel 16:46, Ezekiel 16:55. See also Matthew 10:15; Matthew 11:23. Egypt is not applied to Israel in the O.T., but is “an obvious symbol of oppression and slavery” (Swete).

Where also their Lord was crucified (σταυροωhopou kai ho kurios autōn estaurōthē). First aorist passive indicative of stauroō to crucify, a reference to the fact of Christ‘s crucifixion in Jerusalem. This item is one of the sins of Jerusalem and the disciple is not greater than the Master (John 15:20).

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
Bibliographical Information
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/revelation-11.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Dead bodies ( πτώματα )

Read πτῶμα carcassSee on Matthew 24:28; see on Mark 15:45.

In the street ( ἐπὶ τῆς πλατείας )

Lit., “Upon the street.” See on Luke 14:21.

The great city

Jerusalem is never called by this name. Different expositors refer it to Rome or Babylon. Milligan to Jerusalem.

Spiritually ( πνευματικῶς )

Typically or allegorically. Compare 1 Corinthians 10:3, 1 Corinthians 10:4.

Our Lord

Read αὐτῶν theirfor ἡμῶν our.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/revelation-11.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

And their bodies shall be — Perhaps hanging on a cross.

In the street of the great city — Of Jerusalem, a far greater city, than any other in those parts. This is described both spiritually and historically: spiritually, as it is called Sodom Isaiah 1:9 etc. and Egypt; on account of the same abominations abounding there, at the time of the witnesses, as did once in Egypt and Sodom. Historically: Where also their Lord was crucified - This possibly refers to the very ground where his cross stood. Constantine the Great inclosed this within the walls of the city. Perhaps on that very spot will their bodies be exposed.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/revelation-11.html. 1765.

Scofield's Reference Notes

great city

i.e. Jerusalem.

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Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Revelation 11:8". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/revelation-11.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

Ver. 8. And their dead bodies] This shows it cannot be meant as a natural death; for how should their bodies lie dead (in that sense) for three years and a half, or (say as it were) for a shorter time?

Of the great city] Rome, of whose greatness Lipsius and Stapleton have written. See Revelation 17:18; Revelation 18:2-6. Hence she is called the great whore, and great Babylon, not without reference unto the old Babylon; which was so great a city, that when it was taken by Cyrus, some part of it knew not what condition they were in till three days after. (Herodot. Arist. Pol.)

Where also our Lord was crucified] For he was put to death by a Roman judge, by a Roman authority, by a kind of death proper to the Romans, &c. He is also crucified in Rome in his members, word, spirit, and worship.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/revelation-11.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Their bodies dead, in the sense before mentioned, shall continue so for three days and a half, of which we shall speak, Revelation 11:11. But what is here meant:

1. By the great city?

2. By the street of the great city?

Some, by the great city, would have Jerusalem understood; but that was now far from a great city, nor do the addition of those words in the latter end of the verse prove it; for Christ was not crucified in that city, but without the gates. Most judicious interpreters, by the great city here, understand Rome, which is seven or eight times (under the name of Babylon) so called in this hook, Revelation 14:8 Revelation 16:19 18:10,16,18,19,21; nor is any other city but that so called. This great city is here said, in a spiritual sense, to be Sodom and Egypt; Sodom, for whoredom and filthiness; Egypt, for oppression of the Lord’s Israel. As to the second question, what is here meant by the street of the great city? Mr. Mede hath irrefragably proved, that it cannot be meant of any parish, or such place in this city, as we call a street:

1. Because our Lord was crucified neither in any street, or parish, or any other place within the walls of Jerusalem.

2. Both Jerusalem and Rome had many more than one street.

3. Because the bodies being dead, doubtless lay in the place where they were slain; but men do not use to fight in the streets of cities.

4. Nor was that a place for all people, kindred, tongues, and nations, to see them in.

He therefore rightly judgeth, that the Greek word which we translate street, signifies the territories and jurisdiction of this city. See what he says to justify this in his Clavis Apocal. 40. p. 138. And this makes the last clause plain; for though our Lord was not crucified within any city, or in the street of any city, yet he was crucified in a place belonging to the jurisdiction of the Roman emperor; and it is very likely that it is in Europe that the witnesses shall be slain, which, in this sense, was all of it a street belonging to the city of Rome.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/revelation-11.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

и трупы их оставит на улице Отказ похоронить врагов во все времена был способом показать неуважение и презрение к ним (ср. Деян. 14:19). Ветхий Завет вполне определенно запрещает эту практику (Втор. 21:22, 23).

великого города Сравнение Иерусалима с Содомом и Египтом подчеркивает развращенность города. Вероятно, служение свидетелей было обращено к еврейскому народу, в результате чего начинается его обращение (ст. 13).

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/revelation-11.html.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

The great city; the seat of the persecuting power; supposed to be Rome, or places distinguished for wickedness under her control.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/revelation-11.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘And their dead bodies lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.’

Here the city in mind is clearly identified as Jerusalem. It is the place where the Lord was crucified. John could not have made it plainer. It is a clear indication of how God sees Jerusalem at this point. He sees it as a place of sexual perversion (Sodom - Genesis 19; Jeremiah 23:14; Jude 1:7) and of idolatry and worldly aggrandisement (Egypt - see below), the very sins God had especially warned the seven churches against in readiness for this day. The people were guilty of following the ways of the land of Egypt and the land of Canaan (Leviticus 18:3). They were in direct disobedience to God, in contrast with the witnesses and the church of Christ. They prefer idolatry (Nehemiah 9:18; Ezekiel 23:3 with 7 ), and the luxuries of Egypt to the Lord’s fare (Numbers 11:5-6), for they honour the Beast who demands the one (Revelation 13:4; Revelation 13:12) and provides the other (Revelation 13:17).

For Jerusalem as ‘the great city’ brought to humiliation see Jeremiah 22:8. For Israel as Sodom, apart from the holy remnant, see Isaiah 1:9. How far this idolatry will be literal, and how far spiritual idolatry, only time will tell. Religious artefacts can soon become idols as witness the brazen serpent of Moses (2 Kings 18:4).

‘Their dead bodies lie in the street’. No one is permitted to bury them. They are exposed to total shame just as Christ was. Psalms 79:1-4 is illustrative of this episode and is probably in John’s mind. ‘Oh God, the nations are come to your inheritance, your holy sanctuary have they defiled. They have laid Jerusalem in heaps. The dead bodies of your servants they have given to be food to the fowls of heaven, the flesh of your saints to the beasts of the earth --- there was none to bury them. We are become a reproach to our neighbours, a scorn and derision to those who are round about us’. It is probable we are to see here the last remnants of the church in Jerusalem. One by one they have been hunted down, but these, with their two prophets, had been preserved for the task they were given. Now they too have been put to death.

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/revelation-11.html. 2013.

Foy E. Wallace's Commentary on the Book of Revelation

In verse 8, the specter of their dead bodies was seen lying in the street of the great city; it was an open spectacle of shame upon "the faithful city become an harlot." (Isaiah 1:21) The once glorious city was figuratively called "Sodom and Egypt," a designation known to the Jews as symbols of wickedness. Jerusalem had become a spiritual Sodom and Egypt. (Jeremiah 23:14; Ezekiel 16:46-52; Isaiah 1:10)

The great city is identified in the text as Jerusalem by the description where also our Lord was crucified, of which, and in reference to himself, Jesus said, "for it cannot be that a prophet perish out of Jerusalem." (Luke 13:33; Matthew 23:34-37)

It was consistent with all aspects of the scene to designate Jerusalem as Sodom and Egypt. The two names in biblical history were synonymous with abominable wickedness, oppression and persecution. Both designations--the holy city, and Sodom and Egypt--were adaptable to the checkered history of Jerusalem.

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Wallace, Foy E. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Foy E. Wallace's Commentary on the Book of Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/foy/revelation-11.html. 1966.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The beast will add insult to injury by allowing the corpses of the two witnesses to lie in the street unburied. This was the worst indignity that someone could perpetrate on a person in biblical times (cf. Psalm 79:2-3). "Mystically" (Gr. pneumatikos, "spiritually") indicates a comparative rather than a literal meaning. The city will be similar to Sodom and Egypt in that it will be extremely wicked, morally degraded, antagonistic toward God, and oppressive toward God"s people because of Antichrist"s influence. The place of Jesus Christ"s crucifixion identifies this city as Jerusalem (cf. Jeremiah 22:8). Other views are that it is every city that has opposed God"s servants through history, [Note: Mounce, pp226-27; Morris, p150; Kiddle, p199.] Rome, [Note: Swete, p138.] or Babylon (cf. Revelation 14:8; Revelation 17:1; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 18:10). Since God specified a spiritual understanding of the identity of "the great city" here, it seems reasonable that he also would have specified a spiritual meaning of other entities in the book if He had wanted us to interpret them this way.

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/revelation-11.html. 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Revelation 11:8. Their enemies are not satisfied with putting them to death. Dishonour and contumely are heaped upon them after they have been slain. The use of the singular for the plural number in speaking of them in this verse is remarkable, for the true reading is not, as in the Authorised Version, ‘their bodies shall lie’ but their dead body lies. There must be a sense in which the witnesses, though spoken of as two, may be regarded as one.—Their dead body lies in the street, in the broad open way, where there are many passers-by to behold the contempt and the profanation (comp. Psalms 79:3).—This street belongs to the great city, several characteristics of which are next given. Spiritually it is called Sodom and Egypt, and there also their Lord was crucified. That this city is in the first place Jerusalem not, as many suppose, Rome seems clear from the statement that it is the city in which the Lord was crucified. But the question still arises, What does ‘Jerusalem,’ so spoken of, denote? The literal Jerusalem alone it cannot be, not only because all such names are in the Book of Revelation allegorically used, but also because the city is ‘spiritually,’ that is allegorically, called Sodom and Egypt. Sodom and Egypt, however, were both remarkable for three things, their sinfulness, their oppression of the people of God, and the judgments by which they were overtaken. As these ideas, again, correspond exactly with the course of thought in the present passage, we are justified in thinking that they are the ideas mainly associated in the mind of the Seer with the two names. ‘The great city,’ therefore, is something sinful, persecuting, doomed to judgment. Still further the thought of both Jews and Gentiles must be connected with this city—mention of the crucifixion leading us to the one, of Sodom and Egypt to the other. We are thus led to regard ‘the great city’ as a designation for a degenerate Christianity which has submitted to the world.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/revelation-11.html. 1879-90.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Their bodies shall lie in the streets. It is what has often happened to the bodies of the martyrs, and may happen to Henoch [Enoch] and Elias [Elijah], for three days and a half, for a short time. --- The great city. Some understand any city where Christians are persecuted. Others by the following words, where also their Lord was crucified, will needs have to be understood Jerusalem, which they hold shall be rebuilt in the time of antichrist, and where by him shall be put to death Henoch and Elias. But others think it may be expounded of heathen Rome, which in a mystical sense might be called Sodom for its infamous crimes, and Egypt for its idolatries and superstitions, where Christ might be said to be crucified, not as to himself, but in his members, according to what he himself said, Matthew xxv. 40. "inasmuch as you did it to one of these, my least brethren, you did it to me." (Witham) -- City; Jerusalem, which is supposed will be the residence of antichrist, and filled with a great concourse of people. (Menochius)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/revelation-11.html. 1859.

Gary Hampton Commentary on Selected Books

The "great city" is always Babylon in Revelation. (Revelation 14:8; Revelation 16:19; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 17:18; Revelation 18:2; Revelation 18:10; Revelation 18:16; Revelation 18:18-19; Revelation 18:21) This is a worldly city full of spiritual adultery, slavery, or tyranny, and one that rejects the truth, thus is said to have crucified the Son of God.

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Hampton, Gary. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Gary Hampton Commentary on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghc/revelation-11.html. 2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

dead bodies = corpse (singular, with all texts). Greek. ptoma. Only here, Revelation 11:9 (plural) Matthew 24:28. Mark 6:29.

shall lie. Read "lie".

in. Greek. epi. App-104.

street. Greek. plateia, a broad place or way, rather than "street". See Revelation 21:21; Revelation 22:2.

the great city. See Jeremiah 22:8. Jerusalem will have been rebuilt only to be again destroyed. See Isaiah 25:2-9.

spiritually. See 1 Corinthians 2:14.

Sodom and Egypt. Compare Isaiah 1:9, Isaiah 1:10. Ezekiel 16:46, Ezekiel 16:53; Ezekiel 23:3, Ezekiel 23:8, Ezekiel 23:19, Ezekiel 23:27. See Psalms 9:9; Psalms 10:1.

our. The texts read "their", The Holy Spirit thus points to the city in the plainest way.

crucified. Only here in Rev.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/revelation-11.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

Dead bodies. So 'Aleph ('), Vulgate, Syriac, Andreas; but A B C, Coptic, read singular, 'dead body.' The two fallen in one cause are considered one.

The great city - eight times elsewhere used of BABYLON (Revelation 14:8; Revelation 16:19; Revelation 17:18; Revelation 18:10; Revelation 18:16; Revelation 18:18-19; Revelation 18:21). In Revelation 21:10 (the new Jerusalem), the oldest manuscript omit "the great" before city; so it forms no exception. The reference is, by anticipation, to mystical Babylon. Which - `the which.'

Spiritually - is a spiritual sense.

Sodom - the term applied by Isaiah 1:10 to apostate Jerusalem (cf. Ezekiel 16:48).

Egypt - leaning on which was the Jews' besetting sin.

Where ... Lord was crucified. This identifies the city as Jerusalem, though the Lord was crucified outside. Eusebius mentions that the scene of Christ's crucifixion was enclosed within the city by Constantine: so it will be at the time of slaying the witnesses. The Beast (e.g., Napoleon and France) has been long struggling for a footing in Palestine: after his ascent from the bottomless pit he struggles more (Bengel). One of the Napoleonic dynasty may obtain that footing, and even be regarded as Messiah by the Jews, in virtue of restoring them to their own land; and so may prove the last Antichrist. The difficulty is, How can Jerusalem be "the great city," i:e., Babylon? By becoming the world's capital of idolatrous apostasy, such as Babylon, and then Rome, has been; just as she is called also "Sodom and Egypt."

Also our. A B C, Origen, Andreas, etc., read, 'also their.' Where their Lord also, as well as they, was slain. Compare Revelation 18:24, where the blood of ALL slain on earth is said to be found IN BABYLON as in Matthew 23:35, 'upon the Jews and JERUSALEM' (cf. Rev. 11:37-38 ) shall 'come ALL the righteous blood shed upon each.' Jerusalem shall be the last capital of the world-apostasy, and so receive the last and worst visitation of all the judgments ever inflicted on the apostate world, the earnest of which was given in the Roman destruction of Jerusalem. In the church-historical sense, the Church being the sanctuary, all outside is the world, the great city, wherein all the martyrdoms of saints have taken place. Babylon marks its idolatry, Egypt its tyranny, Sodom its desperate corruption, Jerusalem its pretensions to sanctity, because of spiritual privileges, while being the murderer of Christ in the person of His members. True of Rome. In the special sense, Jerusalem is (Hebrews 13:12-14) the world-city from which believers were then to go forth to "seek one to come."

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/revelation-11.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.
their dead
9; Psalms 79:2,3; Jeremiah 26:23; Ezekiel 37:11
the great
13; 14:8; 16:19; 17:1,5; 18:2,10,18,21
Sodom
Genesis 13:13; 19:24; Isaiah 1:10; Jeremiah 23:14; Ezekiel 16:53-55; Amos 4:11; Matthew 10:15; 2 Peter 2:6; Jude 1:7
Egypt
Exodus 1:13,14; 3:7; 20:2; Psalms 78:43-51
our Lord
18:24; Luke 13:33,34; Acts 9:4; Hebrews 6:6; 13:12
Reciprocal: Psalm 141:7 - bones;  Isaiah 1:21 - become;  Isaiah 24:10 - of confusion;  Isaiah 26:19 - Awake;  Jeremiah 50:40 - GeneralEzekiel 16:46 - thy younger sister;  Ezekiel 24:6 - Woe;  Daniel 11:42 - and;  Hosea 11:8 - Admah;  Amos 5:11 - treading;  Matthew 11:23 - in Sodom;  Matthew 23:37 - Jerusalem;  Luke 17:29 - GeneralActs 2:10 - Egypt;  Revelation 14:20 - without;  Revelation 16:10 - upon

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/revelation-11.html.

Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts and Themes on Revelation

The Cross Of The Lord Jesus.

Revelation 11:8.

1 Corinthians 1:17.

1 Corinthians 1:18.

"Where also our Lord was crucified."The first of these passages strikingly identifies the Master and the servants—our Lord and His witnesses. They were to suffer as He suffered and where He suffered—one with Him in life and death, in shame and glory—one with Him on the cross, in the grave, in resurrection, in ascension, and on the throne. The words, "Where also our Lord was crucified," come with a strangely solemn power. It is the last reference to the cross of Christ in the Bible, and corresponds well with that frequent expression in the Revelation, "the Lamb slain," carrying us back to the "the seed of the woman" and "the bruised heel."

The second passage is one of the many (nineteen in all) in which Paul refers to the cross and its meaning, the cross and its connection with the good news, the cross and the way of preaching it. In his estimation that cross stood out pre-eminently as the great center around which his faith revolved. It was the basis of his hope towards God; it was the main article in his creed, from which all others shot forth like rays from the sun. It stood alone and unapproachable in the matter of salvation; as the altar of the burnt-offering—as the place outside the gate where the sin-offering was consumed—as the point where all the offerings meet.

It was not to Paul, the mere place of the great self-surrender, the example or model of self-sacrifice; it was the place of propitiation, the substitution of life for life—the Just One there suffering for the unjust—the Blessed One bearing our curse—the Holy One bearing our sin. In preaching this cross, the apostle dreaded and shunned the wisdom of words—human eloquence—lest thus the naked cross should be disguised and disfigured. It must stand out bare and unadorned, "majestic in its own simplicity," as the brazen serpent on the pole. That serpent and that pole need no ornament of man. There they stood, with the divine remedy for Israel. To cover them, to deck them, to paint them, would be to destroy their power to heal—to make them of none effect. So is it the naked cross that does the work of healing. To deck it with flowers, and rites, and pomp, and eloquence is to destroy its power—to grieve that Spirit whose office is to turn the sinner"s eye to it as the health of the world. Look and be healed! Look and be saved! The virtue of the cross is drawn out by simply looking. Know and be blessed! For "by His knowledge (the knowledge of Himself) shall my righteous Servant justify many."

"The cross of Christ!" O world, this is your one hope. That cross contains all that you need of love, and healing, and peace. Under its shadow the chief of sinners may sit down and rejoice.

"Where also our Lord was crucified."O Israel, O Jerusalem, here is your condemnation. O world, here too will be your condemnation, if you look not, and believe not! That cross will utterly condemn all its rejecters and despises. That cross overthrew Jerusalem, city and temple, for her rejection of the crucified One; it scattered Israel—what will it not do to each person who has slighted it? Round it the world"s history revolves—on it the world"s destiny hangs.

(1.) The cross was the place of GUILT and CONDEMNATION.(Matthew 27:22, Matthew 27:26, Matthew 27:28)—The condemned of men were there. The thieves were there; it was their "own place." Connection with the cross inferred crime, worthy of death.

(2.) The cross was the place of SHAME.(Hebrews 12:2) It was shame that was there; and each one who was sent there was treated as a shameful thing—one of whom his fellow men were ashamed, and who might well be ashamed of himself. It was the type of the shame and everlasting contempt in reserve for the unbelievers. Hence it was a "reproach" and "offence" (Galatians 5:2).

(3.) The cross was the place of WEAKNESS.(2 Corinthians 13:4) Christ was "crucified through weakness." It was the exhibition of man reduced to the extremity of helplessness. In order to save us who were "without strength" (Romans 5:6), our Surety took our helplessness upon Him, and became "without strength" for us.

(4.) The cross was the place of PAIN.(Hebrews 13:12) Anguish of body was there to the uttermost; and thirst was there; wounds and bruises were there. There is no pain like that of crucifixion. Here is the fulfillment of the roasted lamb of the Passover—here is the passing through the fire.

(5.) The cross was the place of the CURSE(Galatians 3:13) "Cursed is every one who hangs on a tree." The Blessed One was made a curse for us. He went to the accursed place, and there bore our curse, that we might receive His blessing.

(6.) The cross was the place of REJECTION.(John 19:6) "Away with Him!" was the cry; "not this man, but Barabbas." Those who were nailed to the cross were the outcasts of men. Christ was "despised and rejected of men" (Isaiah 53:3).

(7.) The cross was the place of HATRED.(Matthew 27:25) "Let Him be crucified!" "His blood be on us!" Here was human hatred speaking out. "His citizens hated Him!" This is the heir; come, let us kill him!" "They gave me hatred for my love!"

(8.) The cross was the place of DEATH.(Matthew 20:18-19) It was death that was there; here we read, "The soul that sins it shall die." Death, the death of the cross, was our Surety"s doom. The place of death became the place of life to us. "By His stripes we are healed."

Such were the evil things connected with the cross, which by the work done by the Son of God have all turned into good. All our evils He took upon Him that He might secure for us all the good belonging to Himself. For condemnation, He gives us pardon; for shame, honor and glory; for weakness, strength; for pain, ease and comfort; for the curse, the blessing; for rejection, acceptance; for hatred, love; for death, life everlasting. He who believes has all these things! All the evil passes to Jesus, and all the good to us, on our crediting the testimony of the Holy Spirit to the cross and the things done there.

This cross, where so many evil things meet, is the place where all GOOD THINGS are to be found. God gathered all the evil to that spot, that He might utterly make away with it, through Him who took all the evil on Himself, that He might bring out of it only good. At the cross it was consumed by fire—it was buried out of sight. The crucifixion transformed the evil into good!

(1) It is the place of PROPITIATION. (Leviticus 16:15; Romans 3:25).The altar was there for the burnt-offering. The place outside the gate for the sin-offering was there. "He His own self bore our sins in His own body on the tree" (1 Peter 2:24). The sin-bearing work was completed there, when the cry went up, "It is finished!" The expiating blood was shed on the cross. The atoning work—the work that justifies—was consummated on Golgotha. Nor can justification be separated from the cross, or transferred to resurrection. ""The chastisement of our peace was on Him; and by His stripes we are healed." "He was wounded for our transgressions He was bruised for our iniquities." The ending of His vicarious course on earth was the giving life for life. His death, instead of ours, satisfied the law. A divine death was the substitute for a human death. All the sacrificial virtue of the transaction, and all the value of the substitute, were transferred to us. Jesus died that we might not die. He was the propitiation for our sins. He was the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. The cross is the place of exhausted penalty and magnified law. That which covers the sinner entirely and shields him from wrath was finished there. That covering, that propitiatory covering, whose power and virtue are unchangeable throughout all ages, and underneath which we are secure from wrath, was wrought out there. The propitiation of the cross is the substance of the glad tidings which we bring. It originated in the love of God; it contained and embodied the love of God; it gave effect to and carried out the love of God; it brought home the love of God to us as sinners.

(2) It is the MEETING-PLACE.(Exodus 29:42) It is the place where we meet with God, and God meets with us in friendship, and love, and joy. It is the place where the Father meets the prodigal and embraces him. On this spot alone, and underneath this tree alone, can God and the sinner look each other in the face, without fear on the one side or displeasure on the other. There God speaks with us, and there we speak with Him. We take the Lamb, lay our hands upon it, present it as ours, confess our sins over it, that so all the evil in us which stood between us and God may pass from us to Him, may be carried by it to the altar, and there consumed, so as no longer to hinder the meeting.

With sin thus transformed from us to the divine victim, thus carried away and consumed by fire, we are no longer afraid to look up to God, and no longer stand in doubt of His favor towards us, and His willingness to bless us. Ten thousand times a day we sin;but as often as we sin, that sin passes immediately away from us to the sacrifice, which, once offered and accepted eighteen hundred years ago, is better than ten thousand times ten thousand sacrifices to keep up the reconciliation, to secure perpetual forgiveness, and to maintain unchanged the security of the meeting place—the place of communion and fellowship between us and God.

(3) It is the place of LOVE.God"s love is there, shining in its full brightness, unhindered and undimmed. "God so loved the world" gets its interpretation at the cross. On the one hand, we see how much man hated God, and, on the other, how much God loved man. Herein is love! It is love that has found for itself a channel whereby to flow down to us; love that has opened a well of blessing gushing forth from the foot of the cross.

(4) It is the place of ACCEPTANCE.Here we become "accepted in the Beloved." Here the exchange takes place between the perfect and the imperfect. Believing in the perfect One, we become "complete in Him." Conscious only of evil, we take refuge in Him in whom there is no evil, that we may be represented by him before God, and so treated by God as being without evil, even in the eye of His holy law. Feeling our utter lack of goodness, we flee out of ourselves to One in whom there is all goodness—who is absolutely perfect; so perfect, so infinitely perfect, that He has enough and to spare of His perfection for us. The fullness of evil that is in us is thus not only covered over by the atonement of the atoning Son of God, so as to become invisible, as if it were non-existent—but is supplanted by the fullness of all goodness, is exchanged for the perfection of another, even of the perfect One, so that God, looking at us, sees only our Representative, and deals with us according to His excellency and preciousness. What we should have received, in the shape of punishment, He gets for us; what He claims and deserves in the shape of reward, and glory, and favor, we get, as represented by Him, and treated by God as entitled to all that to which He is entitled.

Our consent to be treated on the footing of this foreign merit, this perfection of another—is what God asks of us. Such is the proposal which the gospel makes to us. This is substantially the meaning of our believing in the Lord Jesus Christ. Receiving the divine testimony to the sin-bearer as true, we give our consent to be represented by Him before God. Thus we exchange places and persons with Him. He was made sin, we are made righteousness; He takes the curse, we take the blessing. We hear the cry upon the cross, "It is finished"—and we know that the work which justifies is done. All that follows—resurrection and ascension—is the result of the completed work; not the completing of it, but the fruits of its completion. "He was delivered, because we had sinned; He was raised, because we were justified" (Romans 4:25). As it was "by the blood of the everlasting covenant" that He was brought from the dead (Hebrews 13:20), so was it because our justification was finished on the cross that He rose from the dead. The knowledge of this brings to him who knows it forgiveness, acceptance, justification—we become "accepted in the Beloved."

The cross accomplished such things as the following—

(1.) The cross removed the wall of partition.(Colossians 2:14) Between Jew and Gentile it threw down the middle wall of partition. It rent the veil in twain from top to bottom. It swept away all that hindered a sinner"s access, and said, "Come boldly to the throne of grace;" "come unto me."

(2.) The cross made peace.(Colossians 1:20) The great quarrel between heaven and earth, between God and the sinner, it made up; for it removed the ground of that variance, and provided a righteous basis for reconciliation and peace. The peace is made. It is paid for. It is finished. It is a true and righteous peace.

(3.) The cross has secured oneness.(Ephesians 2:15-16) Thus oneness is not simply between Jew and Gentile, but between both of these and God; between them both, because between both and God. Both are reconciled in one body by the cross, the enmity being thereby slain. He was "numbered with the transgressors" (Mark 15:28), that we might be numbered with the righteousness.

(4.) The cross has brought life.(2 Corinthians 13:4) "He was crucified through weakness, yet He lives; we are weak in Him (as He was on the cross) but we shall live." His weakening and emptying on the cross gave opportunity for the whole life-giving power of God to flow in. We, thus weakened and emptied (when, in believing, made one with Him), are filled with the same life-giving power. The cross, the place of weakness and of death, thus becomes to us the place and fountain of life. From a crucified Lord life flows to the dead.

(5.) The cross contains power.(1 Corinthians 1:18, 1 Corinthians 1:23) It is "the power of God unto salvation." Power for us, for the weak, for the sinful—"the power of God"—is there. Omnipotence has made its dwelling there. The cross is its storehouse or treasure house. There is the hiding of divine power. There is the arm of the Lord revealed.

(6.) The cross is the focus or center of all wisdom.(1 Corinthians 1:24) The wisdom of God is there. It is the fullest and most glorious exhibition of Jehovah"s wisdom. Here is the perfection of wisdom; and all the wisdom which the sciences exhibit—(astronomy, anatomy, or the like)—cannot to be compared with this. The world thinks it foolishness. God thinks it wisdom; and every soul that has come to know its own needs and sins thinks the same.

(7.) The cross crucifies the world.(Galatians 6:14) To the believing man the world is a crucified thing. There is now enmity, not friendship—hatred, not love—between the woman"s seed and the serpent"s seed. The cross has produced the enmity. It has slain the world, and made it altogether unlovable. One sight of the cross strips the world of its false beauty and attractiveness!

(8.) The cross furnishes a theme for glorying.(Galatians 6:14) Paul gloried in it, counting it the only thing worth boasting of, worth admiring, worth caring for. The cross is the scorn of the world—it is the glory of the saint. It is the theme of the church"s song, the theme of her praise. She glories in the cross.

(9.) The cross is the model and test of service.(Mark 8:34; Luke 9:23) It calls us to liberty, yet to service also—the service of liberty. Thus it both liberates and binds. It takes off one yoke to give another (Matthew 11:29). It gives us the perfect example and pattern of obedience and service, in Him who was obedient unto death—the death of the cross. It tests our service by giving us a cross to carry; not Christ"s cross—that no man can carry—but a cross of our own. Each man must take up his own cross and follow the great Cross-bearer. Self-denial, self-surrender, self-sacrifice, are all exhibited there. There especially "Christ did not please Himself" (Romans 15:3). "Not my will, but Yours be done"—is to be our motto, as it was His. Looking unto Jesus and His cross fits and nerves us for this. "Follow me" is the voice of the cross.

(10.) The cross is the badge of discipleship.(Luke 14:27) The disciple is not above his Master. He is a cross-bearer—a "crusader," in the true sense of the word. No cross—no discipleship. He who is ashamed of the cross is ashamed of Christ. The daily life of a disciple is to be a carrying of the cross. He who does so will find few admirers and sympathizers. He will know the loneliness of his Lord and Master.

(11.) The cross is God"s way of salvation.(Acts 10:39-43) Pardon is written on the cross; salvation; eternal life. The saved thief, who went from his cross to paradise, is the great illustration of the saving power of the cross. For salvation we know nothing, except for Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Corinthians 2:2). The glad tidings are written on the cross—good news of a free salvation to the unsaved—salvation through Him who came to seek and save the lost—who upon the tree of death bore their guilt in His own body, and now sends out the glorious message—the tidings from the saving cross! The love of God is written on it—no, "God is love," is the true inscription for it. "God is love" beams out from every part of it—and to know this to be saved!

(12.) The cross is the measure of Christ"s endurance and obedience.(Philippians 2:8) He descended from the highest heaven, that He might take flesh, and in our flesh endure and obey as man. It was a vicarious endurance and obedience—all His life long. He stood in our stead from Bethlehem to Golgotha. The cross, with its agony, and shame, and death, was the extremity of His willingness to do the Father"s will—to bear our burdens—to drink our bitter cup of wrath and woe. Thus the "perfection of our substitute" not only covers our imperfection, but is legally and judicially ascribed to us by God Himself. The law lets go its hold of us—and deals with our Substitute.

(13.) The cross is the pledge and standard of divine love.(Romans 5:8) The Father"s love is here—for God so loved the world that He gave His Son. Christ"s love is here—the love that passes knowledge, the love which many waters could not quench, nor the floods drown; love to the uttermost; love grudging no toil, nor pain, nor weariness, nor reproach for us! If you want to know how much you have been loved, look to the cross of Jesus!That meets and answers all our doubts.

(14.) The cross is the revelation of God"s character.(1 John 4:10) In the person of the God-man, "the Word made flesh," God"s character is contained—all that is in God is there. In the life of the God-man there is the unfolding of that character as the gracious God. In the death of the God-man upon the cross there is a yet further revelation of the character of "the God of all grace." Here the divine perfections came out in full harmony—all that seemed discordant being here reconciled—truth and mercy meeting—righteousness and peace kissing—God just and the justifier of the ungodly—infinitely holy, yet pardoning the unholy!

In the cross God has given us His true name, and the true interpretation of that name. His whole character and actings are here announced, explained, and harmonized. Let us listen to the testimony which the cross gives respecting God"s gracious nature—His loving heart—His compassionate purposes to sinners; and in accepting that testimony all blessing will flow in. Let us accept God"s interpretation of His own character in the cross! Let us beware of misconstruing Him. Let us acquaint ourselves with Him.

(15.) The cross is God"s lamp of light.The world is dark. The cross is light. The cross shines with the very light of heaven. He who is the God of light hung there! That which the cross makes known concerning God and His love is the light of a dark world. Only from the cross can the sinner derive his light. "They looked and were enlightened;" for He who hangs there says, "I am the light of the world." And never was He more its light than when He was nailed to the cross in helplessness. From the cross that light still shines out to a dark world. Let us walk in the light of the cross. God says to us, "Arise, shine, for your light has come!" "The true light now shines!" "The day has broken, and the shadows have fled away." The ever-burning lamp of the cross is sufficient for the darkest child of a dark world—in his darkest day and hour!

(16.) The cross is the universal magnet.(John 7:32) "I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto me." Here is the true center of gravitation. Here is the great attraction, or attractive force. The Christ of Bethlehem attracts; the Christ of Nazareth attracts; the Christ of Bethany and Nain attracts; the Christ of Sychar and Jericho attracts—but most of all, the Christ of Golgotha! There is that in the cross which wins the sinner"s heart. The cross beckons him; it calls him; it invites him; it beseeches him; it draws him. A crucified Christ, the uplifted Son of man, is the one universal magnet! Its magnetic power is irresistible; yet it is the irresistible of love and not of law. Law compels; love attracts. Law crushes; love lifts up. And all love is in that cross—the fullness of God"s forgiving love.

(17.) The cross is the universal balm and medicine.The cross is the balm of Gilead—and the crucified Christ is the Physician there. From that tree distills the healing for the sons of men. The leaves of it are for the healing of nations. Its medicinal properties have been tested by time—and have been found divine. There is no disease which is able to resist its medicinal powers—they flow out on all sides, and flow down everywhere. He who approaches, he who touches—no, he who "looks", is healed! Eternal health is yonder. Let it flow in. The world is sick—sick unto death. Here is healing for it. Will you be made whole, O man? Go to the healing cross—go to the divine Healer and become whole!

(18.) The cross is man"s estimate of sin.Not only was the deed of crucifixion a denial of sin and a defiance of God, but it was the setting up of a new standard of sin. It was man saying, We do not need a Sin-bearer; we are no such sinners as to need a Substitute; sin is not such an evil as to require expiation. This was "the way of Cain;" it was Cain"s rejection of the burnt offering, his refusal to acknowledge the evil of sin, or to own himself worthy of death. God"s intention in the cross was to declare the evil of sin; man"s intention was to make light of it, and to defy its consequences. For man, in making light of sin, despises God"s threatenings against it, and braves the divine penalties.

(19.) The cross is God"s verdict against sin, and His estimate of it.(Romans 8:3) Here is God"s condemnation of sin—of the flesh—of the world. Look at that cross!—and learn how God hates sin! How He unveils the flesh with all its lusts—how He strips off the world"s mask, and exposes its deformity. When disposed to make light of sin, or to indulge the flesh, or to admire the world, let us hear God"s voice bidding us look to the cross, and to Him who was nailed to it by that sin, that flesh, that world.

The cross says—Oh, don"t do that abominable thing which I hate! If God thought as slightly of sin as man does, would that cross have been needed? Would Christ have needed to suffer? Would any expiation have been needed, beyond a few tears or sights? God points to Christ"s cross as the proof of His hatred of sin!—and when man would treat it lightly, He bids him listen to the expiring agonies of the Sin-bearer! Or when man would excuse himself, or palliate his guilt, God answers—Did your sin crucify my Son? What do your sin deserve, though other sins might be light?

(20.) The cross is man"s estimate of the Son of God.Already He had been valued at thirty pieces of silver. But here we have a still lower estimate. Here is the value man sets on His person, His life, His teaching, His blood. God asks us—"What do you think of Christ?" Our answer is the cross—"Crucify Him!" Here is man erecting the cross, the nailing the Son of God to it! Such is the heart of man! Such is man"s rejection of the Christ. The cross is the standing proof and witness of man"s rejection of God"s beloved Son and His salvation. To this day the cross is foolishness and a stumbling block to man. He both hates and despises it!

(21.) The cross is God"s interpretation of law and its penalties.Not merely grace, but righteousness is unfolded here—the righteousness of law—of the law. God here shows us what law is, what law requires, what law can do, how law can avenge itself, how law can vindicate God, as well as how God can vindicate law. In this aspect it is truly law that planned and erected the cross; law that demanded the victim"s death; law that cried "Crucify!"; law that nailed Him to the tree! In the cross we see how holy, and just, and good is that law, (Galatians 4:4). The cross had undertaken to answer law"s demands for us—He was seized by it and led out to the place of execution as the worst of evildoers. If the law were not holy, and broad, and pure, why did the Son of God—the giver of the law—hang on the cross? Why was He forsaken by God there? Why did He die there?

Thus interpreted by the cross, how perfect does the law appear! God has given us many interpretations of it, but the cross is the most explicit, and clear, and complete. In the cross, God protests against all attempts to undervalue or dilute the law. Man may think it too strict. God does not; and in proof of this points to the cross and His Son there, bearing our penalty. Would the Father have laid these burdens and pains upon His Son—unless the law had absolutely required them? Would he who most honored the law have been punished by the law—unless He had been bearing sin? Let those who speak of the gospel being a modified law, by obedience to which we are saved, look at the cross. Is there any appearance of a modified law there? No! we see the law in all its undiluted perfection exhibited in the life,and in all its unmitigated strength and penalty, in the deathof the Son of God! The gospel is founded on a fulfilled and unmodified law—a law unchangeable and inexorable. Our pardon and salvation are all legal and righteous, springing from law—as truly as from love. Our life comes from the substituted death of another!

Thus we see in the cross,an epitome of the Bible. The whole revelation of God is there! From the cross we hear the truth, "where sin abounded, grace has super abounded." All the love of God is there. The sinner"s condemnation and the sinner"s pardon are there. God"s invitation issues forth from it, to the chief of sinners. "Come!" "Look unto me and be saved." God"s eternal purpose is here unfolded—"the good pleasure of His will." The fountain opened for sin is there. The rest for the weary is there. The relief for the conscience is here. The refuge for the guilty is there. The balm of Gilead is there. Peace to the troubled is there. There God meets with man, and man meets with God—heaven and earth embrace each other. Herein is love! It is love that takes in the worse—love that took in the dying thief—love that knows not bounds—love that looks for no qualifications in him who comes, but that he needs it—love which is yearning over the lost, and stretching out its hands to the most rebellious and unholy—love which offers not merely pardon, but the perfection of the Son of God to the sinner—with all which that perfection can claim!

Yet in the cross also is the doom of the unbeliever! He who takes the cross for what God tells him who it is, is saved, and no amount of sin can hinder its virtue from flowing out to him perpetually! He who refuses or neglects the cross must not only bear his own sin, but the sin of rejecting God"s salvation. That cross will be the millstone tied round his neck to send him to the lowest hell! When He who hung upon the cross ascends the throne, where will the rejecter of the cross appear, and what will he say for his rejection?

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Bibliographical Information
Bonar, Horatius. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Light & Truth: Bible Thoughts and Themes on Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bch/revelation-11.html.

E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

Dead bodies must be understood in the light of the comments on the preceding verse. We know the literal truth is that Rome was the institution that mistreated the Bible and took it away from the people. For that reason the symbols in this verse must be interpreted accordingly. The city is the domain of the apostate church, and the reference to Sodom and Egypt is made because of the wickedness that was in those places and their enmity against the Lord. The Lord's crucifixion also is laid to the same kind of elements that plotted the attack upon the Bible.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Zerr, E.M. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/znt/revelation-11.html. 1952.

Hanserd Knollys' Commentary on Revelation

Revelation 11:8

Revelation 11:8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

In this verse, Jesus Christ showed his servant John where these two prophetical witnesses shall be killed; viz.

in the street of the great City, which great city is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

This great city is Mystery, Babylon the great. { Revelation 17:5} That City which then reigned over the kings of the earth. { Revelation 17:18} The Roman papal dominion, to wit, the whole anti-Christian kingdom of the beast, the great Whore, and the false Prophet, called the Man of Sin, and the Antichrist, etc. The street of the great city, is the place where the dead bodies of the two slain witnesses lie unburied for a time; which place being spoken of by way of eminency, must be understood either in relation unto the two witnesses, or in relation unto the beast that shall kill them, or in relation unto both. Now take either of these, or both, and it doth not, and it cannot signify the whole kingdom of mystical Babylon, because that is the city, as before proved, not the street which is after (v13) called the tenth part of the great city; nor are all the witnesses of Christ

in the street of the great city

killed, but, very many of them; for there were some of them alive, who called to these dead witnesses, when the spirit of life from God, was again entered into them, saying, Come up hither, etc. { Revelation 11:12}

Therefore, by

the street of the great city

we are to understand some part of it, and not the whole city; that Isaiah, some very eminent and famous kingdom, where these two witnesses have most eminently born their testimony for Christ against the beast, the great Whore, the Church of Rome, and the false Prophet; the Pope, the Papal Prelacy, and the Popish Clergy; which is (in my opinion) this Kingdom of England. For the highest, and most eminent testimony for Christ, His Kingdom, His Worship, and His Government, and against the kingdom, worship, and government of Antichrist hath been, yet Isaiah, and will be born by Christ's faithful ministers, and his churches of saints (that are his two witnesses) here in England, especially in London. And the description of this street and city of England and London, if it could be delineated, and drawn to the life, or lively portrayed (as the prophet was commanded by the Lord, { Ezekiel 4:1} to portray Jerusalem upon a tile), London would seem to be so like that city where our Lord was crucified; and England so like the land of Egypt; yea, and both this nation, and this city, would so resemble Sodom, that every one, who shall view and consider the type and antitype, will doubtless be of my opinion, and say, certainly London is spiritually Jerusalem,

where our Lord was crucified,

and where his two prophets must be killed. And is not England as like Egypt for oppression, exaction, and other cruelties against the Israel of God? And (which I cannot without abhorrence write), how like Sodom and Gomorrha these two near adjoining cities are for pride, and fullness of bread; yea, for whoredom, adultery, blood-shedding, sodomy, and other abominations; for which hainous wickednesses, God did burn Sodom and Gomorrha, and set them forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire { Jude 1:7} And God did overthrow some of the cities of Israel, as he had overthrown Sodom and Gomorrha { Amos 4:11} Yea, and God will destroy these cities also for their Sins, if the rulers and inhabitants thereof will not repent and return to the Lord { Isaiah 1:10-20} Hear the Word of the Lord, ye Rulers of Sodom: Give ear unto the Law of our God, ye people of Gomorrha; - But if ye refuse, and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the Sword; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. And the Laodicean Churches shall know, that God commandeth his destroying messengers to begin at His sanctuary { Ezekiel 9:5-7} and that judgment must begin at the house of God. { 1 Peter 4:17-19}

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Knollys, Hanserd. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Hanserd Knollys' Commentary on Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hkc/revelation-11.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

8.The great city—In opposition to the holy city of Revelation 11:2; and so identical with the Babylon of Revelation 14:9, the antichristic capital.

Lie in the street—Picture of most dishonouring exposure. The defeat of the reformation is in its hour of defeat the object of derision through all the ranks of the apostasy.

Spiritually called—The word figurative is the opposite to literal, and the word spiritual, as an epithet for language, is opposed to secular. Secularly the great city is called Babylon, but in the dialect of the spirit it is a Sodom, an Egypt. Babylon is called Sodom as the seat of licentiousness, whose end was to be burned. Revelation 19:3, compared with Genesis 19:28. And is called Egypt, as the cruel oppressor of God’s people, from which they were called to come out, Revelation 18:4.

Where’ crucified—Stuart, Gebhardt, and others, consider this clause as demonstrating that Jerusalem is the great city. But, 1. All the references to Jerusalem in the Apocalypse make her a symbol of the holy. She is “the city of God,” Revelation 3:12; “the holy city,”

Revelation 11:2; the “beloved city,” Revelation 20:9; the “holy city,”

Revelation 22:19. And so, also, the Jews and Israel are throughout a type of the true Church. 2. On the other hand, in every case the “great city” is Babylon, Revelation 14:8; Revelation 17:18; Revelation 18:16; see also, Revelation 16:19; Revelation 18:10; Revelation 18:19. So uniform a use, in both cases, cannot but be decisive. 3. Our Lord was truly crucified, not indeed in the literal and local, but in the mystical or spiritual, “Babylon.” Literal and fallen Jerusalem was within the limits, and part of, that Babylon, as being part of the Roman Empire as belonging to antichrist, and as where Roman hands crucified the Saviour. The also implies that our Lord’s being crucified is viewed as a martyrdom in addition to that of the saints slain in the great city.

 

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/revelation-11.html. 1874-1909.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Revelation 11:8. God’s servants rejected and cast aside, as so much refuse! See Sam. Agonistes, 667–704. The “great city” is Jerusalem, an identification favoured by (a) incidental O.T. comparisons of the Jews to Sodom (Isaiah 11:9; Jeremiah 23:14; so Asc. Isaiah 3:10), (b) the Christian editor’s note , (c) a passage like Luke 13:33, (d) the reference in Revelation 16:19, and (e) passages in Appian (Syr. 50 .), Pliny (H. N. xiv. 70), Josephus (Apion, i. 22), and Sib. Or. (ver 154, 226, 413, written before 80 A.D.), all of which confirm this title (cf. the variant addition in Revelation 21:10): it is indeed put beyond doubt by the peculiar antichristtradition upon which the Jewish original was based (A. C. 19 f., 134 f., E. Bi. i. 179, 180). The obscurity and isolated character of this eschatology, “an exotic growth upon the soil of Judaism” and much more in early Christianity, may be accounted for perhaps by the historical changes in the later situation, which concentrated the antichrist in anti-Roman rather than in anti-Jewish hostility. As yet, however, the seduction of the Jews by a false messiah (cf.John 5:43 and its patristic interpretation) was quite a reasonable expectation: see the evidence gathered in A. C. 166 f. Victorinus, following the Apocalypse literally (Revelation 11:7 = Revelation 17:11), makes Nero redivivus beguile the Jews. The alternative to this theory has won considerable support (especially from Spitta and Wellhausen) upon various grounds; it regards the great city as Rome, where the two prophets are supposed to preach repentance to the heathen world and eventually to be killed. But although this suits some portions of the language well (e.g., Revelation 11:13, conversion to God of heaven), it is not exegetically necessary; it introduces Rome abruptly (8 c being of course taken as a gloss) and irregularly: nor does it explain the general contour of the oracle as happily as that advocated above. Bruston’s ingenious attempt to take . with (= Jewish justice) is quite untenable, and the great city is not likely to be a translator’s error (Weyland), for .— (cf.Galatians 4:24 f.) as opposed to (“literally,” Just. Mart. Dial. xiv. 231 d) is “allegorically, or mystically.”— , not as the home of magic (cf. Blzu’s Altjüd. Zauber-wesen, 39 f.) but as a classical foe of God’s people (and Moses of old?). The connexion with the water-dragon of Revelation 12:15 (cf.Ezekiel 29:3; Ezekiel 32:2) is obvious. Philo allegorises E[914] usually as a type of the corporeal and material.— . . ., no wonder if Christians suffer, after what their Lord had to suffer (cf.Matthew 10:22-25; Matthew 10:28 f.) at the hands of impious men. There is none of the modern’s surprise or indignation at the thought of “Christian blood shed where Christ bled for men”.

[914]. Codex Sangermanensis (sæc. ix.), a Græco-Latin MS., now at St. Petersburg, formerly belonging to the Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. Its text is largely dependent upon that of D. The Latin version, e (a corrected copy of d), has been printed, but with incomplete accuracy, by Belsheim (18 5).

 

 

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Bibliographical Information
Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Revelation 11:8". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/revelation-11.html. 1897-1910.